Tuesday, 27 March 2007

Heavy Metal, Man!

One of the big arguments during the AT vs. Euro War was that it's dumb to classify games. We should just call them all "games" because that's what they are. Anything else is a waste of time. Of course, when you take this argument and look upwards, you realize that it's a load of crap. After all, why not just call everything "objects". It would be so much easier than classifying "food" separately from "sewage". Of course, McDonalds never bothered to differentiate between the two but that's a different story.

Enter Heavy Metal.



If you're one of the uninitiated, you think it ends there - a genre is a genre. But if you're a true fan like Billy Sparkles, you know that Heavy Metal is actually equivalent to one of those big mega-corporations that basically owns everything on earth. There's a ton of different kinds of metal! Here's just a few. I'm sure Billy could at least double this list:

Alternative metal
Avant-garde metal
Bay Area thrash metal
Black metal
Blackened death metal
Christian metal
Classic metal
Death metal
Doom metal
Extreme metal
Folk metal
Funk metal
Gothic metal
Groove metal
Industrial metal
Nu metal
Oriental metal
Power metal
Progressive metal
Shred metal
Sludge metal
Speed metal
Symphonic metal
Technical death metal
Thrash metal
True metal
Viking metal

The point is, people like to classify things. It makes them happy. They jump for joy, run in circles, and clap their hands twice. Well, maybe not Metal fans.

So when you cry foul that board gaming has what, five genres, be glad you're not a Heavy Metal fan like Billy Sparkles.

24 comments:

Michael Barnes said...

This reminds me of an apocryphal story that may or may not be true.

Back in the early days of metal there was a lot of crossover in scenes, and apparently at some point Slayer chased Motley Crue down Hollywood Blvd. or something like that.

I can't help but wonder if Nikki Sixx kept yelling back at Kerry King & Co. "But why can't we just like _all_ music?", if Mick Mars was saying to Vince Neil "those nasty Slayer boys are just creating division in our niche scene!"...and if Tommy Lee was thinking "Man, that Tom Araya really hurt my feelings by suggesting that my musical tastes are inferior to his".

Ken Bradford said...

I'm trying to imagine the neighborhood windows shattering as an Arayan howl went bellowing down the boardwalk.


"Yo Tommy, check that out, man!"

"Where, Vince, where!"


"AAAAAAAAARAAAAAAAARAAAAAAAAAARAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH"




And let's just get one thing out of the way: Morbid Angel is by far the best death metal band to have ever existed. They were so far ahead of the pack it's embarassing. They are the only death metal band from my youts that I can still listen to and enjoy today.


The very idea of "Viking Metal" is hilarious. "HERDI HERDI HERDI I'LL SWALLOW YOUR SOUL!!"


I'll bet Reiner is a big metal fan. He probably has the entire Powerslave album memorized.


"Why do I haf to be a Powerslave, ya?!"

Michael Barnes said...

Morbid Angel? Bullshit. They fucking suck. I've hated them from day one. I'm not a really big death metal fan, really...I do really dig Possessed, At the Gates, Suffocation...a couple of other DM acts. But not Morbid Angel.

But I do love me some black metal...right now I'm sitting here listening to this AMAZING French BM band, Alcest...whodathunk that the French would be one of the finest exporters of black fucking metal in the world? Peste Noire, Celestia, Vlad Tepes, Brenoritvrezorkre...
great, great stuff.

As for Viking Metal...Bathory's "Hammerheart" is pretty much the pinnacle of the genre as far as I'm concerned...Enslaved does some pretty good VM, as does Falkenbach. And yeah, it's typically pretty hilarious.

I doubt Reiner is a metal fan at all, I'm sure he's more of a Rush fan if he listens to rock at all. If he digs metal, it'd probably some hyper technical math-rock, music store employee jackoff shit like Psyopus...you know, bands people defend with statements like "They have a jazz-trained drummer".

Feh.

Michael Barnes said...

Oh, and Billy Sparkles is the living, breathing embodiment of heavy metal. He's a damn good COMBAT COMMANDER player too.

Ken Bradford said...

Morbid Angel? Bullshit. They fucking suck. I've hated them from day one. I'm not a really big death metal fan, really...I do really dig Possessed, At the Gates, Suffocation...a couple of other DM acts. But not Morbid Angel.



Why do you say these things to me...when you know that I will kill you for it?


http://www.i-mockery.com/generalzod/askzod.php

Shellhead said...

Metal was a phase that I went through as a teenager. Actually, I was into both prog rock and heavy metal. My first concert was Ozzy Osbourne (Bark at the Moon), and I still have that awesome t-shirt, the one that makes it look like a werewolf is ripping my back to ribbons, with fake tearing and bloody gashes.

I still like the hard music sometimes, but I've become more open-minded in terms of genre. Lately, I've been dabbling in some psychobilly, like Tiger Army. And I still like to drop in at Ground Zero, the local gothic industrial club that's been around for over a decade now.

But to be honest, I'm mostly listening to the local college radio station these days, for anything different. They're online too, anybody can listen to them, at radiok.org. Great playlist. And if I really had to pick a favorite genre today, it would be trip hop.

But when it comes to boardgames, I'm only interested in AmeriTrash. This isn't a phase, this is me coming to grips with the kind of gamer that I have always been. Even when I got a hybrid game published last year, I know that the original version would have been an AmeriTrash classic, if not for the heavy-handed final edit by White Wolf.

robartin said...

McDonalds. That reminds me of these wacky vegetarians (sorry Barnes) on Venice Beach who used to sell these awesome T-Shirts that said "McShit" and had a picture of a blood-soaked Ronald McDonald holding a chainsaw next to a hanging side of beef.

Those guys totally must have been Black Metal fans.

Michael Barnes said...

Nah...that sounds like more of a grindcore thing, maybe crust or even gore metal.

If it were a black metal thing, Ronald would have on black and white corpsepaint and be standing in the snow with some kind of medieval weapon, likely lamenting the death of paganism and longing for a return to barbarism. Note the bullet belt holding up his black clown trousers.

It's funny that you claim that vegetarians are wacky...that probably explains why I always hear "Yakety Sax" while I'm eating Morningstar Farms products...

robartin said...

Vegetarians in general aren't necessarily wacky. Remember that I'm married to one. But these guys on Venice Beach? Wacky. Of course, that goes for pretty much everyone on Venice Beach.

There was also an old couple, maybe about 85 years old, that played live music in their underwear. Terrifying.

Jason Lutes said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Oldstench said...

Ok...let's get some things straight here...

I am not Billy fucking Sparkles.
I barely tolerate Billy Motion, so watch it.

Morbid Angel kicks 9000 types of ass. Altars of Madness, Blessed are the Sick, and Covenant are the standard to which all other pretenders must attempt to reach. Most fail.

Viking metal is not hilarious. All metal is hilarious. If you can not laugh at metal, you need to stop listening to it because you are taking it waaay too seriously.

That said, metal owns ye all; bow down before the be-skulled throne and hope for a merciful fate from the kings of metal.

Kevin said...

Er, slightly OT?

One of the best times I've had roleplaying in the last few years was playing a free, rules-light homebrew RPG, Metal Opera.

It's a fun little game where the PCs are all in a metal band of some kind, living under an oppressive government. They rally the forces of freedom to rise up against the violent fear of the prudes and liberate all mankind in an orgy of messy chaos and freedom.

It has a -- dare I say -- elegant system that uses a positive feedback loop. At the beginning of the game, everything sucks. Your van breaks down, you get arrested, etc. You can barely accomplish anything. But, once things get rolling, your power levels increase to ridiculous levels as you channel the power of metal.

The particular game I played in ended with my PC levitating into the air at the last show of their tour, bringing the band's stage prop (a gigantic inflatable dragon) to life, and riding it to defeat an army of UFOs.

It was pretty bitchin'.

Also, the game uses a lot of umlauts.

robartin said...

Billy, I'm afraid that the world now knows you as Billy Sparkles. The damage is done, my friend. Rock on!

Oldstench said...

I'll kill you, and I'll kill all your friends, and then I'll burn your damn house down!

robartin said...

Just don't burn my church down, OK?

Michael Barnes said...

Go Billy Sparkles, go! Man that guy fuckin' ROCKS!

kriz said...

"...apparently at some point Slayer chased Motley Crue down Hollywood Blvd. or something like that."

I believe, actually, that it was the Misfits.

"...And I still like to drop in at Ground Zero, the local gothic industrial club that's been around for over a decade now."

Spartanberg (sp?) eh? It is indeed a fine club, I make it down there very occasionally. I live N. of Charlotte...do you ever make it to the Milestone?

Interesting blog, I've been enjoying it. The more I think about it the more it seems I am an Ameritrash fan...when I first joined BGG I tried to enjoy euros...and I do like some of them...but you guys helped to peel some of the bullshit off of them.

Mr Skeletor said...

So when does the ManOwaR boardgame come out?

Michael Barnes said...

It already is...IN MY MIND. It's a two player assymetrical CDWG...the enemy is Metallica. Manowar wins every time.

Was it the Misfits? Can I not keep my apocryphal music history straight? Damn, that makes it even better...just replace the references to Kerry King and Tom Araya with Jerry Only and Glen Danzig...and what the hell, add Michael Graves and Bobby Steele running away with Motley Crue.

Shellhead said...

kriz: Spartanberg (sp?) eh? It is indeed a fine club, I make it down there very occasionally. I live N. of Charlotte...do you ever make it to the Milestone?

Different Ground Zero. The one I go to is in Minneapolis. I wonder if it's a franchise operation? Does your Ground Zero have Bondage-A-Go-Go on Thursday nights?


Speaking of music and games, it seems to me that these hybrid Euro/AmeriTrash games like A Game of Thrones should have their own designation... EuroTrash!
I've had that Cracker song stuck in my head since yesterday:

"Yeah, I'll search the world over
for my angel in black.
Yeah, I'll search the world over
for a Eurotrash Girl."

kriz said...

"...and what the hell, add Michael Graves and Bobby Steele running away with Motley Crue..."

:D

"Different Ground Zero. The one I go to is in Minneapolis. I wonder if it's a franchise operation? Does your Ground Zero have Bondage-A-Go-Go on Thursday nights?"

Hmm..I'm not sure...its probably been 2 years since Ive been there. It might be a franchise, who can say? Bondage a Go-Go sounds pretty awesome though...
If its not a franchise its most likely the shadows of an alternate universe where the U.S. has already been through nuclear war.

433 said...

Have you ever read The Dirt? It's an "autobiography" of Mötley Crüe, allegedly written by all the members of the band? It's completely awesome -- like Rashoman with whiskey and hairspray.

And Kris, I know that (Minneapolis) Ground Zero! It's a favorite of a great many FFG employees.

433 said...

Oops, I misspelled Rashomon! I feel dumb!

Anonymous said...

Any Rick Astley fans here?
Rickrock!!!!!